A graduate of Williams College, Steinbrenner, nonetheless, funded the Ohio State marching band for years _ his name is on a campus building.
“Mr. Steinbrenner and his wife were the driving force behind the new marching band facility in Ohio Stadium,” said Jon Waters, assistant band director. “We will always remember George Steinbrenner’s love of music and his love of the Ohio State University marching band.”
He was charitable with his time and money before he became the Yankees owner in 1973.
“I met George when I was 9 years old on a baseball field in a Cleveland public park. I prefer to remember him as a young man who encouraged girls and boys to play sports with enthusiasm, skill and courage,” said Donna E. Shalala, University of Miami President and former Clinton cabinet member, of the man who taught her how to slide.
Steinbrenner was such an outsized figure that even President Bill Clinton had some fun with his blustery persona when the Yankees visited the White House after their 1999 World Series championship.
“On that day at the White House, as we walked out on the South Lawn together and the band struck up ‘Hail to the Chief,’ Bill playfully reminded George, ‘Don’t get any ideas, it’s not for you,’” recalled Hillary Clinton, the former first lady and current secretary of state. “But George always had his own song. They say that if you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere, and nobody knew that as well as George Steinbrenner.”
AP Baseball Writer Janie McCauley in Anaheim, Calif., Associated Press Writer David Porter in Little Falls, N.J., and AP Sports Writers Tom Withers in Westlake, Ohio, Hank Kurz Jr. in Richmond, Va., and Ronald Blum and Rachel Cohen in New York, contributed to this report.